If you stayed up late to watch the Nets and Lakers, you no doubt went to bed sad, angry or both. But you were not alone. The ratings for the game, YES announced, were the highest in nearly years for a Nets game...and four times higher than the team's average last season.
After his team's loss to the Lakers, MIkhail Prokhorov got on Moscow radio Wednesday morning to say it will take time for the Nets of gel ... and to talk with pride about being the first foreigner to own an NBA team.
There are 16 banners above the Staples Center floor, each plainly visible to the 15 Nets who did a little shootaround Tuesday afternoon. In interviews, Avery Johnson, Deron Williams and Brook Lopez talked stone-faced about how it will give the Nets an opportunity to compare their progress to a team of Hall of Famers.
It's on national TV (NBA TV). There's already bad blood between former friends. And it's in L.A. Want more? A win by the Nets and a loss by the Knicks would put Brooklyn in a first place tie by day's end. Yeah, it's early but as Brook Lopez says, it's fun again.
History awaits. So does a tough schedule. A win Tuesday against the Lakers would be a significant milestone for the Nets, a six-game win streak that would be their first of that length in eight long years. It would also give some of the Nets some satisfaction after enduring the horrors of the Dwightmare.